Czech Centres are to be found from New York to Moscow, promoting Czech culture and providing a focus for local Czech communities. Now - perhaps surprisingly - a Czech Centre is opening here in Prague, just metres from the city's Estates Theatre. Jan Bondy is the director of Czech Centres. I asked him why Prague needs one.
"We would like to be open windows, to Europe and to other countries, and to use the connections of our centres abroad to present other artists in the Czech Republic. So there should be co-operation between the Czech Centre in America, in New York, with the Czech Centre in Prague, the Czech Centre in Belrin with the Czech Centre in Prague.
"We would like to promote activities and other artists in the Czech Republic...to be a partner, to be open doors and open Prague."
You mentioned artists - what kind of events are going to take place here? I presume exhibitions, what else will go on here?
"We will start with the 'Literature Night'. The official opening will be on April 20, so next week. We hope that our first activities will be not only visual arts, but also literature. We would like to promote German literature in the Czech Republic, we would like to promote international design. So different forms. And also in the future we should have a small library with translations of Czech authors in different languages."
This I believe is the 20th Czech Centre in the world. How do you choose where to open Centres, and where next?
"The newest one will be open in October, in Tokyo. And the last ones to open were in Rome and Madrid."
"Well, pragmatically, there are many Japanese tourists travelling to Europe and we would like to keep them a little longer and bring them back again, and not only to visit main destinations like Prague, Vienna and London, but to stay here in our country and visit more different cities and places."
For more information go to www.czechcentres.cz
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